The Classic Aircraft Aviation Museum located in Hillsboro, Oregon had a number of their Cold War warriors on static display at the Oregon International Air Show 2016. Apart from a former Taiwanese Air Force Northrop F-5E Tiger II produced in the 1970’s the rest of the aircraft were ex-European air force jets from the 1950’s and 1960’s which made for a fine line-up on a sunny day!
Taiwan received 28 F-5E Tiger II light fighter aircraft from the United States in 1975 but also between 1973 and 1986 produced under licence a further 242 F-5E and 66 F-5F two-seat trainers (the museum has an example also but it wasn’t at the air show). The 336 F-5E/F aircraft made them once the largest operator of the type (most are retired these days though). A Taiwanese fellow that chatted with me whilst looking at the F-5E was impressed to see one of his nations combat aircraft at the show so I took a few photos for him with the aircraft. He was happy!
The Hawker Hunter F.Mk.51 sports RAF markings and a striking red livery but was actually one that flew with the Royal Danish Air Force. Only 30 F.Mk.51 Hunters (an export version of the Hunter F.4) were manufactured and this one was delivered to Denmark in 1956 with the last retired in 1974. Following retirement this airframe became one of the first jet warbirds in the UK in the 1970/80’s, hence the RAF markings.
I got a kick out of seeing their early 1960’s model MiG-21F-13 Fishbed fighter but this was not a Soviet one built by Mikoyan Gurevich though. It sports Czechoslovakian markings for a reason, as it was one of 194 MiG-21F-13 fighters built under licence in Czechoslovakia by Aero Vodochody. Kind of cool to see one of their fighters as I am more used to seeing their more well-known Aero L-29 Delphin and Aero L-39 Albatros jet trainers.
The Lockheed TF-104G Starfighter two-seat combat trainer variant of the F-104 (the first interceptor to achieve Mach 2.0 in sustained flight entered USAF service in 1958) from the 1960’s is still a work in progress in its bare metal finish. The TF-104G had no cannon or centerline pylon and to accommodate the second had a reduced internal fuel capacity (220 were produced). This was a former German Luftwaffe then Turkish Air Force example which was retired in 1994 and sold in 2001.
It was interesting to see this jets alongside much larger and far more powerful modern fighters. Next door was a current US Navy McDonnell Douglas F/A-18C Hornet and a Boeing F/A-18E Super Hornet multi-role fighter. Although also born in the Cold War these more modern fighters are worlds apart from their early counterparts in capability and performance. Something those early fighter pilots could have only dreamed of back in the 1960’s!